Davos Philanthropic Roundtable: NEWS

24.01.2013

Participants of the 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable: Online education can change people’s lives

Expansion of online education is already giving people an opportunity to change their lives. This was the matter of discussion at the 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable RevolutiOnline.edu held by the Victor Pinchuk Foundation.

According to the discussion moderator Thomas Friedman, the New York Times Foreign Affairs columnist and the author of the international bestseller “The World is Flat”, online education has a tremendous potential for changing people’s lives and the whole world. “This is the most exiting revolution going on on the planet today”, he emphasized. 

To support his words Tomas Friedman interviewed a 12-year-old girl from Pakistan, Khadija Niazi, who only a year ago took a college level physics course with the online education platform Udacity. Today the young girl intends to carry on with her online education and plans to take on history, astrobiology and chemistry. “I want to know what is universe and how it all works”, she explained. 

The most important advantage of the online education, according to Daphne Koller, co-founder and co-CEO of one of the largest internet education platform Coursera, is free access to education available to anyone, regardless of their financial situation, nationality, geographic location or health condition. “We have seen how availability of access to education changes lives”, she said, highlighting the fact that such access is particularly important to the people who want to get new skills or a better job, as well as for disabled people who cannot study in conventional educational institutions. Founder of Udacity Sebastian Thrun agreed with this opinion, having added that “we are moving towards such a world where education will become a basic human right.”

Video record of the 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable "RevolutiOnline.edu - Online Education Changing the World"

The Philanthropic Roundtable is organized each year at the occasion of the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum to bring together the world’s most renowned philanthropists and leaders from politics, the business community and the non-profit sector. Roundtable discussions address state-of-the-art approaches to problem-solving and seek to inspire the new global philanthropists of the future.

Since 2007, Roundtable panelists have included, among others, Tony Blair, Sir Richard Branson, Bill Clinton, Bill and Melinda Gates, Jet Li, Shimon Peres, Muhammad Yunus,H.E. Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Paulo Coelho, Sean Parker, Eric Schmidt, Alec Ross and others.

The 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable Telco Partner is Kyivstar.

The following day, Friday, January 25, 2013, 12.30-14.00 (GMT+1) the Victor Pinchuk Foundation and an international investment advisory group EastOne will hold the 9th Ukrainian Lunch.  Each year on the occasion of the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos this lunch meeting addressing current trends in Ukraine is hosted in order to promote the country among top international leaders and engage in a dialogue with the international community. Among previous speakers at this traditional event have been Viktor Yanukovych, Carl Bildt, Bill Clinton, Thomas Friedman, Bronislaw Komorowski, Aleksander Kwasniewski, Chris Patten, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, George Soros and others.

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